Here at MBN, we offer practical tips that will help you make better recordings, quickly. With that in mind, here is our list of the top 5 mic preamps that are guaranteed* to make your voice suck less.
It’s important to understand the role of a preamp when choosing one to fit your voice, as well as considering the microphone you are using, which interface and converters you have, and if you have any other outboard processing affecting the signal. As our assessment was conducted completely without rigor of any kind, we have considered none of that.
1. LaChapell Audio 583S MK2 500 Series Tube Microphone Preamp ~ If you own a 500 series rack, you probably think you’re smarter than everyone else. You might actually be smarter if you stuff one of these bad boys in it. It’s pretty great at recording sounds – all of them, but it will absolutely turn your turdy scratchy vocal cords into golden strands of auditory lust-inducing goodness.
2. Neve 1073SPX Microphone Preamp & EQ ~ If you call yourself a vocalist and don’t own a Neve 1073, your voice probably calls you unspeakable names while you sleep. What were once considered design imperfections make this preamp especially adept at smoothing out the ear-splitting edges of that thing you call a voice. It also has an EQ that is perfect for dialing out the poopiness that your friends don’t admit to hearing in your recordings.
3. A Designs Pacifica 2-channel Microphone Preamp ~ Have you ever heard your voice through a Pacifica? No? Slap yourself. Right now. Hard! It has two channels, and if you had two stupid voices you could use them both. The world is grateful that this is impossible.
4. Universal Audio SOLO/610 Tube Desktop Microphone Preamp ~ Here at MBN, we call this “The Shiny Black Turd Polisher”. ‘Nuff said.
5. Chandler Limited TG2 Abbey Road Special Edition 2-channel Microphone Preamp ~ Have you ever wished for a preamp that could make you sound as good as The Beatles? This one cannot do that. It is not made of magical fairy components. It will, however, make your voice suck considerably less.
*Obviously, it goes without saying that we cannot and do not guarantee anything, ever.